Road Trip Necessities

road trip necessities for families

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After a very long 16 months without a road trip, now that we are fully vaccinated, we are finally hitting the road this month! It’s been so long, I almost forgot what we need to pack. So, while I was making a list of road trip necessities, I figured it might be useful for you as well!

I also polled my Instagram followers via stories to see what their Summer road trip must-have products are. I had to share some of my favorites (with their permission, of course).

Now I’m excited to share my Summer road trip necessities list.

Summer Road Trip Necessities

Powmee Kids Headphones


Kids Headphones

Powmee kids headphones include a snug pad cushion headband that comfortably fits all head sizes, delivers rich and clean audio, and blocks out ambient noise. They are compatible with all smartphones and tablets with 3.5mm jack devices. The foldable design is great for travel and makes it easier to carry wherever you go. Perfect for music, movies, game, and education time.

portable dvd player road trip necessities

16.9″ Portable DVD Player

This region-free DVD player supports all-region discs, except Blu-ray. It also supports TV, e-books, USB disk, SD card, headphone output, video output input, and games. Included: 1 x Car DVD player, 1 x DC Adapter, 1 x Car Charger, 1 x Remote, 1 x Game Controller and 1 x AV Cable. @tinygreenmom recommends one for each kid so that there is no fighting!

car seat organizer with cooler and tray

Car Seat Organizer with Tray and Cooler

Built for kids and road trips, this patented boredom buster is a combination cooler, cup holder, snack tray, and organizer in a sturdy portable bin. It’s everything a kid needs for food and fun while on the go. It even comes with a removable carry strap!

alphabet window clings

Alphabet Window Clings

These thick 3D Vinyl Gel Clings can easily be removed and reused, even by tiny hands! It’s perfect to keep your kids busy in the back seat while you’re on the road. Window Clings are great for car or airplane windows and when you get home, the fridge, doors, the bathtub and more!

Welly kids medicine kit travel road trip necessities

Children’s Medicine Travel Kit

Welly’s Children’s Medicine Travel Kit tin contains an organized assortment of individually wrapped remedies to tackle your little one’s symptoms one by one. Don’t get stranded on your next adventure without these kid-friendly chewables to help kick the sick. Perfect for kids 2-11 years old. They also have a travel medicine kit for adults.

collapsible waste basket

Interior Collapsible Waste Basket

This awesome idea was suggested by @racemkay. The Turtle Wax Collapsible Waste Basket easily collapses for simple storage and pops back up when needed. A great solution for on-the-go to help keep your vehicle clean and tidy. Easily stores under a seat when not in use. The wastebasket has a convenient loop handle to attach to a seat or handle in your vehicle.

blink mini indoor camera

Indoor Plug-in Security Cameras

See the inside of your home on your smartphone no matter where you are with Blink Mini’s HD video and built-in infrared night vision. With the use of Blink’s latest chip technology, Blink Mini lets you customize motion detection zones so you are only alerted to the movement that matters to you. Blink Mini lets you see what’s happening in your home, but also hear and talk back – it’s like being home even when you’re not.

professional first aid kit road trip necessities

Professional First Aid Kit Plus Emergency Supplies

Intelligently organized with 200 first aid items and outdoor survival supplies, including an emergency thermal mylar blanket, magnesium firestarter with a built-in navigational compass and emergency whistle, a compact hand saw, an 11-piece fishing kit with swivels and sinkers, and a mini signaling mirror.

OXO tot 2-in-1 portable potty

On the Go Potty

Designed for standalone use with disposable bags anywhere, or as a potty seat on toilets. Seat is sized for little bottoms and shield prevents splatter. Smooth surfaces are easy to clean, and legs fold in to fit the Potty in the included Travel Bag. Includes three disposable bags with absorbent pads.

unbored road trip necessities activities

MindWare Unbored Road Trip – Creative Activities


Recommended by @kelseysharp, car ride games are a necessity! Survive a long car trip while having a blast with a kit packed full of activities! Kids and parents alike will enjoy the nonstop boredom-busting fun: from car bingo and drawing games to memory challenges the whole family can play. The kit includes containers for collecting souvenirs, a book light for night games, a cinch backpack for on-the-go adventures, and recipes for homemade snacks to pack before the trip. Kids can even plot their travels with stickers on a map of the USA.

play & go mat

Drawstring Mat and Storage Bag

The Play&Go bag is a simple and effective solution to storage, and it is a lot of fun. A 2 in 1 storage bag that doubles as a play mat is every child’s dream. For road trip purposes, we use this for laundry! Just put the mat out in the hotel room, have everyone throw their laundry down on the mat and when it’s time to go, it’s all swiftly cleared away with one swing, into a bag that’s packed easily into the car. When kids use the Play&Go it motivates them to clean up and to throw the laundry onto the bag!

travel neck pillow

Memory Foam Travel Pillow

Recommended by @abbysgotguts, this is the world’s best travel pillow for airplanes and travel. The innovative Seat Strap System easily attaches to the airplane seat wings, while the adjustable front clasp keeps the S3 fitting snugly around your neck. With the S3 travel pillow securely fastened to your seat, you can slip off to sleep without worrying about your head falling forward or side – to – side. Combine the Seat Strap System with our super – soft memory foam, quick-dry outer fabric, and convenient zippered storage pouch, it’s no wonder that the Evolution S3 is the best travel pillow for planes, cars, and home use!

Energizer jumper cables road trip necessities

Jumper Cables

6 Gauge, 16 FT booster battery jumper cables for jump starting a dead or weak battery. Ideal for trucks, SUVs, full-size cars, mid-size cars, and small/compact cars. Energizer jumper cables come with a high-grade travel bag for easy transport and compact storage.

wall car charger road trip necessities

2-in-1 Wall and Car Charger

Recommended by @thisfloridamom, I love that this charger is multi-purpose, so you can use it when you travel and when you’re home! This portable palm-size travel 2-in-1 wall car charger is small and compact, and easy to pick up. Folding plug design, it can be transformed into a square about the size of a ring box.

sleep mask 3 pack

Sleep Masks

A good helper for you to eliminate fatigue, improve sleep quality and give you more energy to work and study. Fit for Travel, Shift Work, Meditation, Yoga, etc. Suitable for different kinds of occasions such as indoor, outdoor, and camping. Adjustable.

wet dry waterproof bags

Wet Dry Waterproof Bags

A truly wonderful bag that allows you to carry your wet and dry items in the same bag while keeping your dry items dry and your wet or soiled items separate.

What do you think of our road trip necessities list? Are there any things that we haven’t listed that you bring with you on your road trips? Tell us below!

Don’t forget to check out our road trip hacks and follow along on all of our travel adventures.

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Hello There!

I'm so honored that you've found us! I'm Heather, a Mom of 3 who blogs about parenting, food, occasional travel and how I overcame my daily struggle with anxiety. I miss sleeping and rely on coffee and laughter to get me through the day. I hope you enjoy and visit often!

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  1. These are all must haves for a family road trip. Now that pandemic restrictions have sort of eased up, we are starting to plan for traveling again. We want to do a road trip and go north to the beaches. Waterproof bags and that collapsible waste basket are the first things I need to get. Bookmarked this post for future reference. Thank you!

  2. These are so so cool! I would love to get some if not all these necessities, they’re needed in any car!

  3. Since last year I was thinking about having a road trip and I think my dream came true, these are a must necessities

  4. Great ideas and there are even some items that I did not even think of but your post makes a lot of sense. I may not have kids but I have seen how challenging it is bringing those cuties on a road trip so it is of utmost importance that you come prepared!

  5. Love these ideas! I really need a new car organizer. It’s always a mess in our car when we travel. We need to change that!

  6. I love the idea of the creative kit. I’ve also had a first aid kit in my car but have yet to get jumper cables! Always handy to have.

  7. This is a great list of road trip necessities. it is important to keep the children entertained while traveling, especially on car trips.

  8. Added that car organizer to my amazon cart! We have 2 big road trips coming up this month so that is needed

  9. Thi article is so handy as Iwasnt sure waht to prep for our summer roadtrip next month. thanks for the inspo.

  10. All the products you’ve mentioned sound like the necessity for an ultimate road trip. Can’t wait to read all your upcoming adventures!

  11. Definitely must-haves! For me, pillows and a first aid kit would be the most important must-haves when traveling.

  12. So many great family roadtrip items. I think that Unbored game box would be so fun for kids to stop asking are we there yet

  13. I enjoyed road trips until I reached my 30s. It is just simpler and more enjoyable to travel by airplane for me now.

  14. So many wonderful must have items for the roadtrip. Oh how I miss our family roadtrip too. Hope this pandemic ends soon.

  15. So many great things here to use, even for traveling without kiddos! I’m definitely going to check out a few things!

  16. This might be the best list of road trip necessities I have seen. I need to get that organizer and the collapsible wastebasket.

  17. This is making me excited. Can’t wait to go on a road trip! I will have to check those security cameras.

  18. This is such an amazing roundup!!! We had the travel potty seat for a few years while my twins were in that “danger zone” age but just donated it to another family! I’m really intrigued by the DVD system since we no longer have a DVD player in the house, i wonder if this might hook up to a TV as well as being great for on the go… hmmm…

  19. I wish we could travel but we still can’t move without a good reason here, that being said I’m hopeful it will happen soon so I need to save this list for that time

  20. I love all of these road trip necessities and 2-IN-1 WALL AND CAR CHARGER is one of my favorite awesome list!

  21. It’s ironic that I am reading this post now. We are going on a road trip on Mother’s Day! While my kids are teens, I will use this list to get us packed. Thanks for sharing!

  22. I am so glad reading this article and I will definitely need all of these stuffs for our next road trip. Thank you!

  23. These are all excellent picks for road tripping with kids. It definitely is important to have entertainment and SO important to be sure you bring all the necessary safety equipment.

  24. These are all great ideas. I love the headphones. They let the kids stay entertained without the adults having to listen to said entertainment. LOL

  25. So many great items that I need to get for my next road trip. I like that trash bag the best.

  26. I saw several items I would use for road trips. My husband and I are campers and like to have things around us that makes our travel easier.

  27. Yes, yes, yes to all of this. Taking a road trip with little kids can be challenging. I can see myself using all of these when I travel with my boys.